Monday, October 27, 2008

Off-Road Track Review: Norcal Hobbies' New Layout

Hey everyone,

I headed out to Norcal Hobbies last Sunday for a few hours of practice. I focused on improving my driving with the B44 and was excited to see the new track layout. IT IS AWESOME!

new layout pano oct. 26

The track has amazing flow! By the end of the day I was able to push it hard and get in the rhythm and it felt great! The front of the track features a nice big table top jump that wont break (as many) cars. just after that there are a series of corners and a hairpin that leads into a corner table with a single mini jump just after it. Kevin Jelich (the track's designer) apparently hits that table wide and clears it and the mini jump, I tried it and its a pretty tricky thing to pull off cleanly.

After another tight turn there is a double and then a turn into a long step-up leading into another high speed double, then a hair pin into the back straight. This progression is super fun once you get the flow!

The back straight is very fast with an elevation change about half way through and a slow climb after into a chicane area. Hitting full throttle on the back straight is awesome and super fun to watch as the cars bump over the elevation changes and slow hard for the end turn into the chicane.

Another fast, tight turn takes you into a set of doubles then a wide turn back to the front table jump.

The track is now being run wet so I ran my M3 holeshots. they worked great! Tire wear is good but only as the track stays wet. When it starts to dry, it gets slippery and the tires start to wear faster. I will try the harder R3 compound next time around to see if the wearing is better. During races they lightly water before every heat so hopefully I can make it a couple of race days with one set of tires (right now I am about one race day and maybe one heat on a single set of tires).

There are a lot of jumps, but no car breakers like we've been used to. I love the crazy air from the other layouts, but there is enough action on this track that I didnt miss it at all. Also, they took a lot of the infield piping and cut it in half so Slash trucks and biggues wont get stuck on them. Even my B44 had no trouble getting out of a jam if I miss-jumped and ended up off the track.

Awesome track, Kevin Jelich and crew have done it again!

Any thoughts? Join the discussion!